Crackdown Begins On Supermarkets Over Dumped Trolleys

A new campaign has been launched to make supermarkets responsible for the 3,000-plus trolleys that are dumped in canals and rivers every year, costing taxpayers’ £150,000, according to British Waterways.
The organisation, which maintains 2,200 miles of Britain’s canals and rivers, said the money it spends fishing out old shopping trolleys could be better spent on improving the waterways and protecting wildlife and has launched a hotline to name and shame the worst offenders.
The new hotline will allow members of the public to report abandoned trolleys so that “hotspots” can be identified and supermarkets shamed into taking action.
Robin Evans, chief executive of British Waterways, said the 320 supermarkets located close to British Waterways’ canals and rivers were not doing enough to stop their customers from dumping their trolleys in the water.
“Shopping trolleys are symbolic of the mindless pollution that takes place along our canals and rivers every year and quite frankly we are fed up with having to clean up after other people,” he said.
“The annual cost of recovering the trolleys, which equates to just 18 minutes of profit from the UK’s leading retailers, is money we would otherwise spend on much needed maintenance and repairs to the nation’s historic waterways.”
“There is also clearly much more the supermarket chains can do to take more responsibility and contribute to the environmental costs of clearing their trolleys,” he added.
In an effort to help grocers clean up their act, British Waterways said it will award a “golden trolley” honour to the most environmentally responsible supermarket later this year, and an “off your trolley” prize to the retailer doing the least to tackle the problem.
Supermarket stores will be encouraged to take measures such as bringing in pound-operated trolleys, or agreeing with British Waterways to pay the costs of recovering their trolleys, in an initiative supported by leading waterways charity the Inland Waterways Association.

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